No one likes it when they are stuck at a simple problem and can’t find an instant solution to it. It can feel like a giant gas balloon inside you that starts to grow as soon as you face the problem and it is almost on the verge of bursting if you do not find a solution soon. The problem could be in your kitchen while cooking and you can’t find a kitchen tool that you know you had yesterday or searching for your credit card at the shop counter with a queue building up behind you. There is no point in panicking or getting angry because these will not help to solve the problem. That is where creative problem solving methods come to your rescue. They can keep you from unwanted tension and the consequences of that tension.
Creative problem solving techniques you should know
The problems you face daily may not be the same each time. But, if you calm down and think, you will understand that there may be some simple solutions to those problems and following a few easy techniques may help to get rid of the problem. So, here are some of the techniques that you need to keep in mind:
Keeping your head together and finding your center (getting grounded).
Many problems arise when there is inner confusion amongst people. You may have several options and you may get confused as to which option would be suitable. Your mind says one thing while your heart says something else. This leads to conflicting beliefs, perceptions, and wants. Whenever such a situation arises, you should concentrate on what is more important to you. Finding your center is the way to do it. When you center yourself (become grounded), the options will automatically get shortlisted leaving you with an easy choice.
Walk away from the problem
Although this might seem to be running away from the problem it is actually helpful and is one of the most effective creative problem solving methods. Walking away doesn’t mean you don’t want to face the problem. It is just that the problem is not worth spending time on, that’s all. However, it is the timing that you should keep an eye on. You need to know when to let go of the problem. Sometimes, you just need to walk away for a while, not altogether. Getting some space to think or to ignore the problem can be really helpful. Kicking up leaves under the trees or actually going for a walk can truly help you find a solution.
Try a different perspective
Sometimes, it is not just what we think is right. Shifting your perspective and thinking from the point of view of others can actually help to understand their viewpoint as well. You can approach the problem from a different angle and that can help get a solution quickly. For instance, I received a parcel the other day. The sender had put so much parcel tape on it that it was difficult to open but when I turned it over, the bottom was very easy to open!
Your mind may tend to run always to the same solutions because of the life you lead. Trying a different tack or trying someone else’s solution or looking at it from their point of view may open up avenues you might not have dreamt of. This may take you out of your comfort zone but that can be very helpful (if initially uncomfortable) in finding new and creative solutions.
When there is a given set of problems, you have to look at the possible outcomes to those problems. Asking more questions like “why not?”, “what if?”, or “what would be the solution if the problem could be solved backward?”, and so on, can help you get an answer to the problem. Sometimes, a head-on approach to the problem does not lead you to the required solutions. You may have to take a few steps around to find the answer to the problem. These steps may initially seem like time wasters but they allow your brain to come up with better solutions.
Come up with multiple ideas
This may seem to contradict the “find your center” technique but unless you have a number of ideas that can solve a problem, you cannot come to terms with finding your center. Research has shown that the more ideas you have, the easier it is for the brain to come up with a definite solution. That is why there are brainstorming sessions at offices so that everyone can collaborate in finding the best and most acceptable solution from all the possible solutions. However, you have to be non-judgmental while coming up with the ideas. It will allow you to develop plenty of ideas before evaluating which is best.
The problems that you have in your head are far more confusing than the problems that you had to solve when you were at school. There was a definite problem solving solution to those problems but in order to solve life problems, you need to come up with unique creative problem solving methods.